Tuesday, July 17, 2012

Operation Work Office/Studio Space!


Two weeks ago, I talked about making some new goals for organizing my life. One of those goals includes organizing my life when I'm at work, off the clock, but working on other stuff. AKA "Work Studio Time."

Normally, I hide in the smallest dining room in our little restaurant, ear buds full of music, and work on Little Raindrop... whether it be editing, drawing, or researching. But a lot of the time, regular customers will come in and ask for me, or family or friends will stop by, or even co-workers who should know better, and I'm constantly getting interrupted!

Not that I'm being ungrateful for the company, but really... I'm trying to work!

Many ask, "Why are you even THERE at your job when you should be at home in your studio?!" Because, most importantly, I prefer to be sure that Hubs gets to and from work in one piece. When he's really tired, he'll fall asleep at the wheel. The forty five minute drive from home to work is one straight line with a few lights, and at night there are hardly any streetlamps and there are tons of deer and other wildlife that we are constantly swerving around. It's better to have four eyes than two, and we both know this from experience. How many times have one of us not seen the animal, but the other one did, and just in time? Too many.

My other reason is this: when no one bothers me, I actually get a TON of work done! I'm not distracted by laundry or television or napping. The only other thing to do there is more work...but of a different kind. And I'm sure as heck not going to go wait on tables when I could be making a book.

So I got an idea last week. There was a private party coming in, and they were going to use the small room where I usually work, so I needed a quiet spot for myself. I went snooping around and found a cozy spot in the storage room behind the bar...

This room needs some organization!
Follow the chair...

...to my new spot!

Not a lot of working space, and the view's pretty rotten,
but it's SO quiet back here!

It worked like a charm, being in that cozy storage space. Much like a Cupboard Under the Stairs, I could live in my own little bubble, get what I needed done, then step out into the real world and I'm out of my working zone!

Then I realized how dysfunctional my working space was. I needed more space, more boundaries from the alcohol, and holy heck was this room a mess. So I took it upon myself to tidy up, and make my space a nice little nest!

Behind that wall of soda cans is my cardboard barrier...

I covered the splintery shelves with cardboard...
and now there's a cozy little nook!

Just add some books... and...

Close up shop with a cardboard flap!

Now I know it's rough around the edges, but it works for me! And Hubs is going to be making it so I have access to a plug, and some lighting! And little by little, I'll make it feel more at home. :)

I've already worked in here for a few hours, so the space is fully functional for my needs! Finally, a way to check "out" of the real world so I can dive into Little Raindrop's world!

Tuesday, July 10, 2012

Doodle Fun: Stuff I Draw on People's Leftovers, Part 1

I do this thing at my waitressing job, where I draw little doodles onto people's leftover boxes to surprise them when they get home and see it. And it occurred to me that I should be taking snapshots of such doodles, because I happen to like the things I have drawn. (I've missed some that I've drawn in the past, and it makes me sad!) So I have this album on my personal Facebook profile, called "(Stuff) I Draw on People's Leftovers" and I thought it would be nice to share it here, on my blog!

I must warn you: these doodles are done in seconds, without adjustments, taken by a not so awesome cell phone camera, and under pressure because I'm wrapping up food and doing all the other things a waitress does at her job. So some things are messy and most are not perfect. It's just something I do to make myself happy because I'm drawing, and to make the customer happy, too.

So here they are... Enjoy! :)

This is one I drew on paper for a customer while he ate!


and his

Teasing someone...


Otterly cute!

I Love Broccoli, or Trees.

Someone was being nutty.

They were about to go on a cruise!

The female's leftovers.

Peach the kitten!

Abominable snowman, though it was supposed to be a Wookie.

So the mom wouldn't forget to get the book for her kid!

A fan of Pooh, but no time to draw a whole bear!

This guy got sunburned red like a lobster!

And his faithful Ghost!

Well, that's all for tonight, Folks! :)

Thursday, July 5, 2012

New Immediate Goals! #healthyequalshappy

Hi There!

Just the other day, I wrote this blog post to myself, and subsequently forgot to actually post it:

Hubs and I have plans for a trip to California, to visit family and friends at the end of July into early August.

As summer came along, my productivity on Little Raindrop has dwindled. Mainly because I've been bogged down by the messy house, the messy studio, and my messy health.

So my immediate goal, starting right now, is to get back into some healthy habits. Healthy body, healthy home, and healthy studio because I WANT TO PAINT!

But it was the truth, and describes exactly what I've been up to these past few weeks, so I've been a little sidetracked from my usual routine. I've put aside some of my regular work to get a bit of a rest from the anxiety I get when I become super focused on a project. When I'm really focused, I use every inch of my spare time, put aside the cleaning and reorganizing and even the healthy habits.

Which, of course, isn't healthy. So, Change I Must!

My new positive thinking began, firstly, with focusing on my health. And when I started to lose a bit of weight and gain a bit more energy, I felt like cleaning and organizing! Which made me feel better about myself and our home, and I got the urge to paint and do some fun creative stuff, too. Funnily enough, as I was coming to this realization, a friend of mine posted this article called "The Busy Trap" on Facebook, and it gave me the conviction I needed to say, truly, "It's okay to have some Me time!" Although I'm dying to just play with my paints, I haven't quite gotten there yet. I need to finish making my studio more Artist Friendly, so I can work in it instead of using it like a giant closet. (I promise this is no excuse, I can't really find anything I need for a project, nor is there surface area to do it on!) In fact, I want to have a much better routine, much like artist Chris Raschka created for himself.

I tend to forget that though I am working on a paying project for/with another person, it's still okay to step back and be Me, too. So I'm starting to get really excited about working on a new side project that I want to do, just for me. Just because!

This is cool because it also gives me something to look forward to... almost like a reward, for reorganizing my life better. And I even have a deadline- I want to be ready to get straight to work and play when we get back from California. I am losing weight and cleaning and organizing beforehand, and while on vacation I'll be reading and unwinding. This body, this house, this studio, and just as important, this mind will be ready to go after we return from the West Coast.

It feels really good to get my life back to where I'm feeling good again!

It also feels really good that I have someone to talk to honestly about this! (I mean YOU, Silly!) I've realized I shouldn't feel guilty for not posting or missing a day or being late. It's not Failure, as Sara Zarr says, "but a part of the journey." I'm busy living a real life, and improving my life, and my work is going to show for it. In fact, I haven't had anything truly good to post for ages! And what good are boring blog posts without any art? (Besides this post, I mean.)

Anyways, thanks for listening! Now go outside and get some fresh air and sunshine! It's a mood changer, for sure! :D